In classical guitar, we have tremolo. But I see, most people do it not making any clean sound, they still have the sound of string muted with the right hand (the left hand is okay).

What's the correct way to learn it? So, we can produce clean sound and do it as fast as we should.

  • Are we talking classical trem or flamenco trem?
    – Neil Meyer
    Commented Jul 14, 2014 at 11:21
  • @NeilMeyer I think flamenco and classical tremolo is the same.
    – seseorang
    Commented Jul 14, 2014 at 15:31

3 Answers 3


There are a number of pieces in the classical music repertoire that were specifically written to help learners develop their tremolo technique.

Note: Be absolutely sure to use the correct right-hand fingers in learning tremolo.

Carcassi's 25 Etudes, which are in the public domain and can be found in PDF version online, has several pieces which, if sufficiently developed, can be played in a performance. Off of the top of my head, Etude 7 and Etude 13 both emphasize tremolo.

As for the right-hand, the fingers chosen will depend on the player and the number of notes in the tremolo. A three-note tremolo might consist of a-m-i, i-m-a or even m-a-i. A four note tremolo would probably be a-m-i-a. In my experience, as long as the method of executing the technique is mechanically sound, there may be several equally viable alternatives and the best approach is to choose one and master it thoroughly.

  • I want to second @Kirk's suggestion to try pinky-ring-middle-index. For a continuous four-note tremolo, this pattern is mechanically very good, but may be difficult to master.
    – Grey
    Commented Jun 26, 2014 at 9:05

For right hand tremolo, there is no reason to damp or mute the string. I don't actually know of any pieces where you would do this.

You have a range of options - but the most common these days is to use tirando strokes to pluck, which will definitely not lead to any muting. Even apoyando shouldn't.

So typically, you would use tirando or apoyando with i and p, m, i and p or even a, m, i and p in order to time your tremolo. Your right hand should be arched so your fingers approach the strings almost at a 90 degree angle - no part of your right hand should be resting on the strings.


+1 for the Carcassi Method. My teacher recommended that as well. As for tremolo picking, try this experiment: make a fist. In what order did you close your fingers? Pinky first? Index last? Then thumb? Probably. (That's how I do it.) Consequently, I found it easier to tremolo pick in the same order.

For instance, in Leyenda, I would first use p-i, then p-m-i, and finally p-a-m-i. As I recall, I would begin with p-i with rest strokes, and then switch to free strokes for the m-i and a-m-i tremolo picking. (Free strokes should eliminate any muting problems from other digits.) Of course, your experience may vary. Do what works for you.

  • P being pulgar - thumb, are you saying thumb/index for a two digit tremolo?
    – Tim
    Commented Jun 25, 2014 at 14:16
  • 1
    No, the thumb is not included in the tremolo. I've included that above to illustrate the picking sequence; the tremolo (a-m-i) alternates with the bass (p). In Leyenda, the theme is repeated first with single notes, then two-note tremolo, and finally three-note tremolo -- all in alternation with the bass.
    – Kirk A
    Commented Jun 25, 2014 at 14:21

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